I first discovered Icelandic Horses when I was on a charity ride and rode past a paddock of youngsters, so intrigued by their curious nature I started doing some research. I now own two geldings. I mainly do distance trail riding and social endurance. They cope really well with the climate in the Blue Mountains.
A. Kube – NSW
My family heritage is Icelandic and it is a dream come true to be surrounded by Icelandic horses here on our farm, and to have our children growing up riding these wonderful horses. I truly feel so lucky and blessed. I was raised in Australia and owned ‘regular’ horses from a young age, attending Pony Club and later competing in Eventing and Dressage. As a child and young adult I often visited family in Iceland which is where I developed my passion for the unique Icelandic horse. I purchased my first Icelandic horse in 2008, a mare named Dana (from Haldanes).
We now have 7 horses in our herd and while our breeding program is on a smaller scale, our focus is on quality horses with the exceptional temperament the breed is renowned for. The exceptional temperament is something people who visit us usually comment on – especially people who are not familiar with horses – our horses are more like over-grown puppy dogs with their naturally curious and friendly nature. It is just a joy to be around and we feel lucky to be around them a lot!
T. Ledger, QLD
At Narrawin Stud in Victoria, Australia, I breed, raise and train Icelandic Horses and other gaited horses. My riding focus is on applied classical equitation and mounted combat, including skill at arms, jousting and horse archery. These combine my passion for horses, historical re-enactment and martial arts and give my horses lots of challenging and fun things to do.
I have a small team of horses who go out to demonstrations, competitions, clinics and training days, including two Icelandics. They love skill at arms with sword or lance: picking up rings, hitting shields and spear throwing. But there is also melee with (blunt) weapons and jousting practice on the quintain. They are sometimes ridden in full plate armour, which they do with pride and ease. Although they are on the small side for jousting in tournaments, they are both capable and we have fun at home and at training days. Enjoyment, learning and pride in news skills is the most important thing for horses and riders, and smart horses like these love the challenge.
C. Bahlo, VIC
There is something so wonderfully historic about these horses, it’s almost like time forgot about them for awhile and left us with this treasure from the past. They seem to know this and even the foals look like they view the world with old eyes.
My family’s journey began with an appropriately Viking named horse; Magni. Magni is everything a breed enthusiast would picture while thinking of the classic Icelandic Horse but in this country the breed is quite rare and it was like owning something from another world. Rather then be put off by people’s confusion we embraced it! Any horse sport was worth a go and Magni would put his heart into anything we asked. Children love him and we always get a crowd of curious people at any event.
I had never heard of Icelandic horses until I was introduced to a new friend who was breeding them. My son needed the next size up pony and he fell in love with 3 year old Jol. Jol was so much fun to ride we both ended up riding him. Jol is an amazing horse with a lets try anything and everything attitude. He has done pony club, competed successfully at both Junior and Senior mounted games, one day eventing, showing, show jumping, agility and equagility, endurance riding and most recently extreme cowboy challenges.
R. Benett, TAS